The selection of an acceptable drilling fluid is now more and more linked to the environmental legislation on waste management as well as traditional technical aspects. Disposal of waste drilling fluids and associated contamination is becoming a primary concern worldwide, for example in the USA this issue is regulated at state level, while in Canada it is regulated at federal level. Operators adapt by developing and following Waste minimization, recycling and bioremediation strategies.
Yara’s knowledge of nitrates has allowed it to specifically develop speciality nitrates that can be added to drilling mud (fluid). Primary applications for nitrate today include:
OBMs & SBMs
PetroCare replaces Calcium Chloride in the internal phase. It provides an environmentally friendly solution and reduces waste management issues and related costs.
Clear brine solution
PetroCare can be used as an inorganic flocculant. This application is linked to reactive clays with a high ROP. The main advantage when using this type of fluid is that bit balling and flowline plugging do not occur. PetroCare contains calcium nitrate, which is classified as a “medium clay inhibitor”. Water resulting from dewatering process can be used as a base for preparing other mud systems.
PetroCare acts as an inhibitor of Sulphate-reducing bacteria during fracturing processes. Speciality nitrates are added in addition to biocide products. Biocide is included to protect Guar Gum and reduce biofilms.
Corin fluid tracer
To determine the presence and extent of possible damage of core samples by invasion of the mud or filtrate from the mud.
Liquid and solid waste where Petrocare
Liquid and solid waste where Petrocare has been used can offer a greener solution for waste disposal. For many years Canada has used bioremediation (land spreading). By using Calcium nitrate in place of calcium chloride this offers several advantages:
- Lower acreage required to spread same volume of waste
- Nitrate acts to biodegrade any oil left on cuttings and enrich the soil. Saves need to add additional nutrients to remineralize soil.
More recently it has been found that nitrates can stimulate bio-reactors used to process waste materials and therefore give a higher output from the process. (New bioremediation processes)
The above applications have been used by clients in Canada and in several US states such as Colorado, as well as in New Zealand.